USGA Rules Forum Scheduled for Fall 2010

In response to the overall confused majority of equipment manufacturers and players in regard to recent equipment rule changes, the United States Golf Association (USGA) has scheduled a forum for all stakeholders to attend and discuss the first equipment rollback in 75 years for Fall of 2010.

According to the USGA website, the forum will cover the following topics:

- The process by which new equipment rules and rule changes are proposed

- Timing and communication of USGA research projects that potentially could lead to rule changes

- Timing and communication of proposed equipment rule changes

- The process and timing for implementing changes to measurement systems and other rule enforcement methods

- Procedures for considering changes to non-performance related rules

- Consideration of the impacts of potential rule changes and the evaluation, after an appropriate time period, of the results of implemented rule changes

- The process of commenting on proposed rule changes, including confidentiality considerations

- Timing of the implementation of rule changes

- The decision-making process, including communication of the reasons for enacting new equipment rules or changing existing equipment rules

- The appropriate balance between technology and skill in player performance

Personally, I am rather surprised at the number of timing issues that will be discussed in comparison to player skill, ability, and how equipment change effects differ between handicaps. Futhermore, I certainly hope more attention is paid to limiting the amount of course design changes if equipment will continue to change as dramatically as it has over the past five years (i.e. groove limitations).

The forum will be held at the Golf House in Fair Hills, NJ at a specific time to be determined later.